A Technical Program Manager (TPM) holds the key in helping drive company strategy, aligning teams, collaborating with cross-functional stakeholders, and delivering on multiple complex projects for the company. The world is rapidly digitizing, and companies in the digital and technology space are constantly trying to outdo each other. This explains why companies are looking to hire the best and the brightest for the TPM role.
Oracle is the world's second-largest software company by revenue and market capitalization. The company is best known for developing and building tools for database development and systems of middle-tier software.
The exact role of a TPM at Oracle depends on the team one is assigned to.
Following are some of the different teams at Oracle:
- Supply chain management (SCM) Software
- Enterprise Solutions & Analytics Consulting
- Oracle Cloud Infrastructure(OCI)
- Human Capital Management (HCM) Software
- Fusion Customer relationship management (CRM) development
- Enterprise performance management (EPM) Software
Here's a generic description of the role of a TPM at Oracle:
- Handle the Program Management and Operations for the team you are assigned to.
- Lead Business Intelligence and Business Analytics programs. Understand Oracle offering vs. competition.
- Good understanding of processes involved in pre and post-sales cycles and ability to translate that into clear business narratives.
- Work across multiple virtual teams with differing timelines and objectives.
- Define milestones, success criteria, manage dependencies and deliver iteratively.
- Monitor projects from initiation through delivery.
- Develop and own communication plans to effectively and proactively communicate program status, issues and risks to stakeholders.
- Manage stakeholder expectations across the organization.
- Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Computer Science or related field.
- 6+ years of experience delivering, implementing technical products and projects in a highly technical environment.
- Excellent organizational, verbal and written communication skills.
- Technical program management experience over multiple release cycles or lifecycles for enterprise products or services.
- Comfortable presenting to large internal groups and leadership team members.
- Ability to communicate effectively to a wide range of stakeholders to prioritize work, remove barriers, and keep organizational focus.
- Empathy, judgment, negotiation/influence and analytical skills.
- Ability to succeed through collaboration and working through internal and external organizations and individuals.
- Ability to work independently, defining and managing one’s work while still providing transparency and accountability to management and other interested parties
- Ability to work across and engage individuals and teams located across multiple geographies and or cultures.
- Strong analytical, planning, and organizational skills with an ability to manage competing demands.
Oracle Technical Program Manager (TPM) salary
- Entry-level salary: USD 158,000.
- Senior positions: USD 417,000.
- Median salary: USD 220,000 with the base component being USD 168,000, stock component being USD 40,000 and bonus being USD 12,000.
Typically, the interview process for the Technical Program Manager role at Oracle consists of 3 stages as under:
- Recruiter Screen
- Phone Screen
- Onsite Round
Here's a more detailed description of the interview process:
The interview process starts with a 45-minute interview with the recruiter. This interview call is aimed at assessing your cultural and experiential fit for the role at the company. The interviewer may ask questions regarding your background and previous work experience in the relevant field. He may might discuss previous projects you have handled. You should be thoroughly prepared with your resume. Expect questions such as "Why do you think you are a great fit for the role?" or "Why Oracle?"
The next stage is the Phone Screening Round. This is a telephonic round and may last for up to 1 hour. It is conducted by an Oracle hiring manager/Senior Technical Program Manager. This interview is roughly 1 hour long. Questions in the Phone Screen are asked from a diverse set of topics ranging from technical topics such as System Design and System Architecture to Program Management topics such as product sense and program sense.
Tips for the Phone Screen Round
- In System Design questions, follow an organized approach. Let your answer be the complete package the interviewer is looking for. You could include requirements, suggest solutions, mention bottlenecks and tradeoffs in your answer.
- Make sure you have a good understanding of all of Oracle's products. Questions on Oracle's existing product offerings are highly possible.
Most important questions asked in the Phone Screen Round
- Can you design a Google/Facebook search autocomplete feature?
- Explain the basic system design elements of AWS / Google Cloud.
- Create the front end of a ticketing/travel booking platform.
- What methodology/process are you most comfortable using in your projects and programs?
- It is your belief that your engineering team would perform better if you switched to Scrum, but your engineering manager does not agree. How would you deal with the situation?
- Walk us through a time when you faced an important technical problem that could potentially have delayed your project launch date.
The onsite round for the TPM role at Oracle consists of 5-6 interviews that take up one full day. The interview panel consists of a Product Manager, a Senior Technical Program Manager, and the Hiring Manager. The questions in the onsite round are going to test your knowledge and understanding of the concepts in-depth in the following areas:
- Program Management
Here, your ability to communicate, negotiate with and influence a wide range of stakeholders will be tested. You will also be tested on how well you are able to collaborate with cross-sectional stakeholders to achieve time-bound results for the company.
- Technical Knowledge
Interviewers will test your program sense and product sense concepts.
They may also pop in a coding question here. So, prepare well for these.
- Analytical Understanding
This may include questions on estimations, hypothetical analysis, and troubleshooting.
- Behavioural and Leadership Skills
Behavioural questions will test various aspects of your personality. Most of the questions will be situation-based. An overwhelming focus will be on your leadership skills. Interviewers may also ask you a few questions to understand your motivation levels for the role and company.
Tips for the Onsite Round
- Use design diagrams, illustrations, interaction diagrams profusely in program sense and system design questions.
- For the behavioural questions, keep a few stories around your previous job/projects ready. This can be regarding the difficulties you faced, your achievements, and the overall experience. Use them in your answers to the situational questions.
Most asked questions in the Onsite Round:
- Program Management
- When you’re handling multiple projects, how do you prioritize them?
- What do you mean by Scope Creep? How can you avoid it?
- Why do projects fail? What is the most common reason?
- Share an experience when one of your projects fell behind schedule. How did you bring it back on schedule?
- Technical Knowledge
- How can technology be used to keep a program on target?
- How do you approach risk analysis?
- Suppose you have two stakeholders who provide you with conflicting requirements. How do you determine which one to proceed with?
- How do you use Agile technology in Program Management?
- Can you write a function to identify strings that are palindromes?
- How do a struct and a class in C++ differ?
- Analytical Skills
- Can you estimate how much additional storage YouTube will need to store the videos that will be uploaded during the next year?
- What was Facebook's revenue from ads last year?
- How many iPads were sold in the UK last year?
- Behavioural & Leadership skills
- What was the most difficult situation you faced as a TPM?
- Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
- How do you motivate a subordinate who isn't giving his best?
- What are things that you should take care of while leading a budget-constrained project?
So this was a quick but exhaustive overview of the interview process and how you should go about preparing for it. If you follow the guidelines we have mentioned here, we are sure you would ace the interview.